The Mexican low-cost carrier Viva Aerobus announced that it will deploy 100% of its capacity in November, showing off a V-shaped recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. It also will launch seven new routes and resume operations in another domestic route. Let’s investigate further.
Is this a real V-shaped recovery?
Viva Aerobus and Volaris have been in a tight race to recovery in the last few months. The two low-cost carriers have posted what looks like incredible numbers on the way to recovery. Plus, both airlines had fairly good financial results during the third-quarter of 2020. Volaris posted a net loss of $97 million, and Viva Aerobus’ net loss was of $35 million.
In that sense, both companies still have a long recovery ahead to achieve profitability again. Moreover, Mexico’s low season is coming soon, as the months between January and March are the hunger games for Mexican airlines. So, Volaris and Viva may post net profits until the second quarter of 2021, if not later.
Meanwhile, from a passenger recovery point of view, both airlines have had a V-Shaped recovery.
At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Viva Aerobus’ domestic capacity was 84.7% down, according to government stats. The international capacity demand was 100% down, as Viva stopped flying abroad in May. Now, the airline claims that it will deploy 100% of its original capacity in November, which is astonishing. The airline added,
“We are the first airline in America to reactivate 100% of its operational capacity, compared with the same month of last year.”
So, how did Viva achieve this?
The power of low-cost carriers in Mexico
Viva Aerobus and Volaris are the two low-cost carriers in a country with four leading airlines. It is not surprising that the other two operators, Interjet and Grupo Aeroméxico, are suffering more from the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Viva and Volaris adapted better to the current environment. While Interjet was losing most of its fleet and Aeromexico was filing for a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, Volaris and Viva still received newer, more efficient planes and focused on bringing point-to-point connectivity. At the same time, these airlines seized the gap opened in Mexico City and have launched several new routes from the main Mexican airport.
Finally, Viva and Volaris have optimized their revenues. They don’t depend solely on a passenger ticket; instead, they have increased their ancillary revenues. Both airlines are in the top 10 worldwide of the highest percentage of ancillary revenues, with over 40%. For every passenger they transport, they earn more than $20 on average from ancillary offers like luggage and choosing seats.
What is Viva offering for November?
In November, Viva Aerobus is operating 109 routes (96 domestic and 13 international). Plus, the low-cost airline is launching seven new routes and resuming operations on another. These are the routes it is launching:
- Mexico City: Acapulco, Campeche, and Chetumal (12 November); Ciudad del Carmen and Dallas Fort Worth (13 november).
- Cancun: Aguascalientes (2 November) and San Luis Potosí (4 November)
- Monterrey: Resumes operations to Los Mochis on 2 November.
Since the start of the pandemic, Viva Aerobus has launched 20 new routes. Plus, it is expecting to add some more in the near future. For instance, besides the routes mentioned above for November, Viva will launch:
- Monterrey: San Antonio and Dallas Fort Worth.
- Mazatlán: Chihuahua
- Mexico City: Ciudad Obregón, Durango, Los Mochis, Tampico, Veracruz, La Paz, Chicago, Los Ángeles, Houston, and San Antonio.
Have you traveled with Viva Aerobus recently? How was it? Let us know in the comments.